Jets pull off great escape in Melbourne

Milos Trifunovic has stunned Melbourne City with a second-half brace to put Newcastle Jets on top of the A-League table with a comeback 3-2 win on Friday night.

There was only one team in it during the opening stanza, when City stormed to a 2-0 lead through deflected goals to Aaron Mooy and Stefan Mauk.

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It looked a matter of how many for John van ‘t Schip’s side, only for the Jets to rage back into the AAMI Park contest to rich reward.

Ben Kantarovski planted a firm header past Thomas Sorenson just prior to the hour mark to reduce the deficit.

Then in five minutes, Trifunovic scored a penalty from a contentious handball shout and a header of his own to give Jets coach Scott Miller back-to-back wins over the Melbourne clubs.

The final scoreline would be scarcely believable to anyone switching off at halftime, such was City’s command.

Mooy, named by Socceroos coach Ange Postecoglou as the A-League’s best player this week, was commanding in City’s midfield, ably supported by effervescent duo Mauk and Jacob Melling.

Mooy’s opener came with a huge slice of luck, deflecting off his former teammate Jason Hoffman.

After turning David Carney with consummate ease, the Socceroo found enough space to unleash a long-range strike past Mark Birighitti.

City’s second arrived ten minutes later from Mauk.

The 20-year-old combined with Mooy in the middle of the park and David Williams, on his first start of the season, on the edge of box before poking a ball home with the help of lunging defender Nigel Boogaard.

Even when the Jets’ first goal arrived on 58 minutes, it seemed destined to be a consolation.

Mateo Poljak’s cross found the unmarked Kantarovski, one of Newcastle’s best, inside the six-yard box who headed home.

Then on 75 minutes a delayed penalty decision had City up in arms and the Jets back on terms.

Substitute Wade Dekker slid and handballed inside the box from Hoffman’s cross, with referee Jarred Gillett pausing for seconds before awarding the penalty.

Trifunovic lashed home the penalty and completed the job with a header from David Carney’s set-piece before celebrating wildly in front of Newcastle’s small contingent of travelling fans.

The loss is City’s first in 11 home games, but the three points to Newcastle ensures they have equalled their win tally from last season after just four matches.


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